MOSCOW (AP) — The Kremlin on Friday demanded that Belarus quickly release 33 Russian private security contractors detained on terrorism charges, dismissing the accusations as bogus.
Belarusian officials said the employees of private Russian military contractor Wagner are facing a criminal probe on charges of plotting terror attacks in Belarus amid the country’s presidential election campaign. The contractors were detained Wednesday.
The allegations represent an unprecedented escalation of tensions between Russia and Belarus, traditionally close allies, as Belarus’ President Alexander Lukashenko seeks a sixth term in the Aug. 9 election. Independent observers and opposition supporters in Belarus see the detention of the …read more